Yesterday's Monday Morning Bird Walk at Desert Botanical Garden was quite a hoot - with four Great Horned Owls! One was actually in camera-range instead of being impossibly hidden high up in the cottonwood trees.
Several Verdin were clamoring over one berry-laden bush along the Wildflower Trail, not seeming to care at all that we were so close! You can even see the berry juice on the beak of the Verdins pictured above and below. (Personally, I prefer to eat my berries without being surrounded by paparazzi!)
Of course at the end of the walk when we calculated the numbers of species seen, the Greater Roadrunner and the Harris Antelope Squirrel had to make an appearance so that they could be included in the final count.
There were a number of species of note that I was happy to see - American Kestrel, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Black-tailed Gnatcatcher, Pyrrhuloxia, and Yellow-rumped Warbler.
In recent weeks there have also been a Red-naped Sapsucker, two American Robins, a Loggerhead Shrike, and of course my favorite winter visitor, the White-crowned Sparrows!
To see complete lists of what has been seen in the Garden, see the awesome website, updated weekly, by William and Diana Herron, DBG - Birdwalks Birdlists
Special thanks to the Desert Botanical Garden's docents who have faithfully held the Monday Morning Birdwalks for I don't know how many years - William and Diana Herron, Andree Tarby, Don Witter, Jackie Anderson, Joyce Goodman, Gay Christensen, Merle and Dee Long and many others. We are so fortunate to have so much birding knowledge being generously shared on a beautiful weekly walk!